A Family Tradition

When Henry Lamb married Linda McClay in their sophomore year at NC State, the chemical engineering students planned their wedding around the final exam schedule. Now 35 years since earning their bachelor’s degrees, the Lambs stay connected with the university through giving, the Wolfpack Club and the Alumni Association. They also raised a pack of wolves themselves — their four children, Amy, Nancy, Evan and Andrew, are all NC State alumni.

For Henry, NC State was a natural choice — his father, Harold B. Lamb, earned his animal husbandry degree in 1950. For Linda, a Florida native, the path was less clear. She knew she wanted to study chemical engineering, but the question was where. “I wanted to go away, but not so far away as to have horrible culture shock,” she said. “So I investigated engineering schools in the Southeast methodically, as engineers make decisions, and I chose NC State.”

Linda, who moved to Raleigh by herself at the age of 18, said the welcoming atmosphere made NC State an easy place to love. “NC State took me in when I left home, essentially, and so I’ve been a staunch supporter ever since,” she said. “So they talk about the Wolfpack family, and I believe it.”

After earning his bachelor’s from NC State in 1982 and a Ph.D. in chemical engineering from the University of Delaware, Henry began teaching at NC State in 1987. He continues to work as a professor in the Department of Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering. “I’ve been going to school my entire life, if you want to think about it that way,” Henry said.

Linda, who also has a B.S. in chemical engineering from NC State, earned her professional engineer’s licensing and works as a consulting engineer. Henry and Linda are grateful to NC State for leading them to successful lifelong careers as engineers.

“We love the Wolfpack sports teams and have been loyal to them for decades, but chemical engineering in particular deserves our loyalty,” Linda said. “It’s been how we made our living and how we hope that the next generation will be able to as well.”

The Lambs also became members of the Chancellor’s Circle for the first time last year.

“Well you reach a point in your career when you’re not paying tuition times four anymore where it’s a little easier to be more generous,” Linda said. “We support the institution, we really do, and as far as I’m concerned, always will.”